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The new $20 bill, more uncool money design

posted by Jason Kottke   May 13, 2003

The new $20 bill, more uncool money design from the U.S..

Reader comments

joe bloggsMay 13, 2003 at 3:44PM

funny how everyone cares more about what the money looks like than about how much it’s actually worth…

MarkMay 13, 2003 at 4:08PM

I like it! It’s not the most exciting thing in the world (Thai currency has a window on it!), but it’s 10 times better than the last changes we had.

vesparMay 13, 2003 at 4:10PM

what is so bad?

MacDaraMay 13, 2003 at 4:10PM

one coudl argue to the cows come home about what it’s worth - financially, philosophicaly, etc. - but from a usability point of view, the design is actually very important. i’ve never understood why american banknotes all basically look the same; it must be a nightmare for the visually impared.

MacDaraMay 13, 2003 at 4:12PM

please excuse my previous typos. i really can spell, honest.

joe bloggsMay 13, 2003 at 4:15PM

i like it when they make each denomination a slightly different size, so they stack up neatly in your wallet.

anyway, i don’t think the new twenty is so bad.

the large bold sans-serif number on the back of the redesigned bills a few years ago was supposed to help the visually impared, not sure if it actually did or not.

i can’t spell, so i have no excuse.

Stefan JonesMay 13, 2003 at 4:18PM

I kind of like the colors and background screens.

Biggest to-do: Ditch Jackson. Cycle through a roster of scientists, authors, and artists.

alstkiMay 13, 2003 at 4:35PM

Agreed about Jackson. Get him off of there.

Replace him with Martin Luther King Jr.

drew mclellanMay 13, 2003 at 5:29PM

Even the Bank of England (can you think of an institution more stuffy?) has better designed bank notes than the US.
Teasing aside, the Bank of England has some genuinely interesting material about bank notes on their site.

Brandon D. ValentineMay 13, 2003 at 6:10PM

I would challenge any man who doesn’t respect Andy Jackson to a duel. Ol’ Hickory could whoop the lot of you Yankee PoMo tranzi whackjobs and I’d be happy to do it in his place.

For the record I hate this new design. Pastels have no place on American greenback and that picture of Andy makes him look like a pussy, which he was anything but.

RyanMay 13, 2003 at 9:11PM

Maybe the back cover could have Jackson ordering the massacre of Indians.

Replace him with Teddy Roosevelt. He could have kicked Andy’s ass in a fight and never killed an Indian that didn’t deserve it.

alstkiMay 14, 2003 at 1:56AM

“PoMo tranzi”? What language is that?

judithMay 14, 2003 at 2:07AM

the swarm of bees on the back is more visible here. bees! bees on my money!

jkMay 14, 2003 at 5:38AM

i hate it when they make each denomination a slightly different size, so they won’t stack up neatly in your wallet.

CraigMay 14, 2003 at 11:20AM

It’s boring, that’s all. But I can’t see how they could make drastic changes to one bill at a time. I tried using the Sacagawea dollar coin for other purchases besides public transportation and would get derisive stares. Or at least comments like “oh, you’re using that funny money.” Discouraging really… that many people in my home country are that unworldly. I thought a five dollar coin would have been a nice addition too.

ruthieMay 14, 2003 at 11:36AM

What looks like bees swarming the back of the bill are actually tiny “20”s scattered around, presumably to discourage counterfeiters.

yours trulyMay 14, 2003 at 2:25PM

his shoulders are all gimpy, but other than that the bill is a lot better than anything i’d have figured our government capable of sending out into the world.

tomMay 15, 2003 at 7:39PM

They shoulda went polymer, like australia. Almost indestructable and much harder to countefeit.

JackoMay 18, 2003 at 9:35AM

They should spend a little time working on the back of the bill.
English money looks terrible, they should go to the Euro.

jlMay 18, 2003 at 9:39AM

I am indifferent on when they make bills different sizes, they sometimes stack up neatly in my wallet.

jmMay 18, 2003 at 9:42AM

I like it when they don’t make each denomination a different size, they stack up neatly in my wallet.

monyMay 18, 2003 at 9:46AM

Every five years when they change money designs brings the value up on the old bills for collectors. It’s a new way to keep people from spending and start saving. They need to do it more often with the big bills like the one thousand dollar bill or the one million dollar bill.

jnMay 18, 2003 at 9:48AM

I think they should get rid of currency and have multicolored cash cards.

gen marioMay 20, 2003 at 4:42AM

a pound of twentys is still worth the same either pink or green

Deborah TwymanOct 27, 2003 at 4:29AM


I have watched the commercials for the new money and frankly, I am disgusted and angry that my government would spend 33 MILLION dollars to advertise this ‘new money’ when our children are hungry and when our senior citizens have to go to Mexico to buy their prescription drugs (or do without).

Why on earth is it so important to advertise the fact that we have a new-colored 20-dollar bill? I do not understand why we spend money on something like this when we need the money for FAR MORE IMPORTANT THINGS!

Who ever thought of this idea to spend all this money on advertising should be fired from his or her job. This is absolutely the worst MIS-USE of my taxes I have ever seen; it ranks right up there with the clinical study of why frogs are GREEN (now that was another stupid expenditure!)

I can think of tons of other things to spend the money on, food for our poor, better health care, help for our teachers, and many other things FAR MORE IMPORTANT!

I ask you this- do you not think I would KNOW that there is a new $20 when I see it after I receive it as change at my local grocery store? What difference does it make to me what color my money is?

I understand that the change to the money is to discourage counterfeiting- but the average American is NOT a counterfeiter, and does NOT care what the money looks like, as long as it can be used to buy groceries, clothes, tires for the car, pay the mortgage and other necessities for life.

I think you’ll find that there are millions of people that feel this way and are very upset that our government again found something STUPID to spend our tax dollars on.


This thread is closed to new comments. Thanks to everyone who responded.